Hot Property: River Valley Commons: Burnsville, MN

River Valley Commons Townhomes in Burnsville, MN

Type: Townhouse condominiums

Site, Units: 43 units on 6.2 acres

Developer: TC Homes

Details: Eight years after it was first envisioned as a townhouse condominium community, a bank-owned, six-acre parcel in Burnsville is finally on the verge of being built out.

The Burnsville City Council last month gave its unanimous approval to Dayton-based developer TC Homes to proceed with the 43-unit River Valley Commons 2nd addition — a for-sale townhouse project just south of Highway 13 on a spot that has a long history of frustrated development efforts.

In 2005, the national builder Toll Brothers got approval for a 68-unit townhouse project at the site, but never moved ahead. The property was sold to local builder McDevitt Homes, which in 2006 constructed one five-unit building before shelving the plans amid the housing market collapse.

The site then reverted to Minnwest Bank, which proposed 55 townhouses two years ago but again never proceeded.

The bank now has a purchase agreement with TC Homes to move ahead with scaled-back plans for 43 units arrayed in 16 separate buildings of mostly two and three units each.

The development is to happen in two stages. TC Homes co-owner Brian Tutt told the council he hopes to have a model townhouse ready to show by early spring.

“These are larger townhouses that are meant to appeal to people who may be coming from a single-family home or to first-time home buyers,” he said. “They’re 2,100 square feet, with three bedrooms and a loft. They’re not typical 1,500-to-1,600-square-foot townhouses, which are very boxy. We spent a lot of time on the design, and we’re very excited about it.”

Don Jacobson, a St. Paul freelance writer, is at hotproperty.startribune@gmail.com.

http://www.startribune.com/business/234650321.html

Posted in Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, Community, construction, Energy Star Certified, First Time Home Buyer, floor plan, For Sale, Foreclosures, general contractor, green homes, Home buying, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, New Construction, New Homes, Smart Homes, Square Footage, tc builders, tc homes, Townhomes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Planning for Future Accessibility Needs

by JENNIFER THAYER on DECEMBER 4, 2013

Mirror, Mirror on the wall… can I request a crystal ball?

If only it was that easy to see into the future and tell what Roa’s needs will be when he is age 10 or 18 or 25. Will he be wheelchair-bound the majority of his day? A power chair or will he manage his manual with independence? Will he require assistive technology to communicate? Will he use a walker to move throughout the home? Will he live with us through his adulthood?

All of these questions run through my head as I lay to sleep each night. Bryan and I discuss all options- hopes, dreams, and desires mixed with a splash of fear and a cup of reality. We wouldn’t try to read so much into what the future will bring if it wasn’t for this house building project. Putting so much money into your forever-home is a stressful task. You want to be prepared for anything, yet not throw money into things that might not be necessary. Thus far, we have decided on a few essential barrier free items and need to further evaluate funding and necessity of the others.

First of all, the no-brainer wide doorways, hallways, and entries are set. Also, a pocket door from Roa’s bedroom to the boys shared bath will help minimize mobility obstacles while still offering privacy. The boy’s bathroom will have a roll under sink and a roll-in shower.

Barrier free showeer and accessible bathroomFor Planning for future accessibility needsspace issues, the bathtub will be in the Master bath. Being 5, Roa still takes a bath with a bath chair for support, however, we know the days of rolling in and showering are right around the bend. Toilet height? Support bars? Shower seat? Adjustable height shower head with removable spray option? All things we are in the process of deciding. Some are easy. Others cause some head scratching.

The current major decision we are making is our basement accessibility. With our initial home plan, we thought we might just go with a slab home without a basement. Why add other floor that Roa would need assistance getting to? Yet the cost with a basement vs. without was quite similar. Who would want to pass up the option of extra storage, office space, and play space a basement can bring? So now we are deciding on the best method for Roa to access the basement? Elevator, chair lift, platform lift? Cost, necessity, space configuration? It is overwhelming. Thankfully, we are working with a builder who has experience with barrier-free builds. TC Homes has worked in the past with the Robinhood Corporation. The Robinhood Corporation has a “national VA contract as well as contracts with other major insurance companies and they work with Medical Assistance waiver programs”. We spoke with one of their representatives and was pleased by his knowledge and helpful perspective in this decision. He knew pricing for the different options and can work directly with our builder to integrate our choice into our building plan. He also will help guide us through the maze of financial funding with Medical Assistance.

One additional special needs component that we may add to our plan for Roa’s daily care needs in the future is a SureHands lift system that the Robinhood Corporation specializes in. We are unsure of Roa’s future ability to move from his bedroom to his bathroom, yet by working this track system into our ceiling and door frame, we can be prepared for extra support.

This building process is quite the adventure. Fears of the future, questions about funding, and trying to find some enjoyment in the process is a balancing act. Yet with the a positive attitude, deep breathing, and experienced support sytems like The Robinhood Corporation and TC Homes, we will make it through.

Yet still,…. I secretly hope for that crystal ball….

 

Posted in barrier free living, Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, construction, Custom Home, Dual-Function, Energy Star Certified, family room, floor plan, For Sale, general contractor, Handicap access, Handicap Accessible Homes, Home buying, How To Build, lots, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, New Construction, New Homes, Remodel, Remodeling, Smart Homes, tc builders, tc homes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Challenges of Building an Accessible Home

by JENNIFER THAYER on NOVEMBER 11, 2013

It’s not about me.

We walk through the home supply store in awe. There are so many different light fixtures and sparkling chandeliers. We brush our hands across bronze, brass, and nickel plumbing fixtures in every shape and size. The displays are perfectly set with tile floors and bath surrounds in every color.

Wow. Fun to look at, but overwhelming when you are now in the part of the building process where you have to select all of these details for your “forever home”. Add to that mind-blurring process, the tight budget set by our builder to help us keep in line while shopping for these house must-haves. That budget is set to accommodate for the handicap accessible necessities… the very reason we are building… a home for our King on his wheelchair throne.

Honestly, when Bryan and I had the house-building discussion. Neither of us was excited. We had never considered ourselves “new house” people. Both antique admirers and vintage collectors, we had wanted to remain in our 70’s built home with it’s hard woods and charm and continue to make it primitively warm with our eclectic tastes. Yet, fate had another plan. We had to get in the new home mindset.

So now it is planning and picking out all the essentials for a newly built home. Overwhelming… to say the least. Our builder is very helpful in the entire process. So many steps to it all and we felt clueless. Add to that the sadness we felt that we were leaving a place we loved and building because we “had to”… the process became stressful and kind of depressing.

When choosing our builder, we went with a family-owned company that has had experience building for people with disabilities. Upon first meeting Brian with TC Homes, we were impressed with his knowledge, laid-back, non-pushy-sales style. It also was a plus that Brian not only was a builder, but had a realtor license to help us sell our current home; two birds with one stone plus a little money saving incentive for having him act as both realtor and builder. Then when we saw a few of the barrier-free homes they built, we were sold on TC Homes. Beautiful, solid built homes with character. They didn’t just say, “Hello, I’m ready for a wheelchair”. They said HOME. Things seemed brighter.

After the sale of our home, Brian was helpful in exploring the lots in areas we liked. He gave us honest opinions about cost, lot dimensions, slope of the land, and tree clearing costs. Such an eye-opener. Finding a flat, clear, lot in an existing neighborhood became our goal. Bryan and I had discussions about how we might like to build in a private, woodsy setting and have some area to roam. Roa’s disability changed our views on that. This wasn’t about our views of a perfect home. Sidewalks and flat surfaces, kids in the neighborhood, little traffic became our go-to list. Disability before desire; our new motto.

We found a lovely setting in a neighboring town. The lot was small, but the association-run neighborhood had many playgrounds, walking trails, and a community pool. It also was a flat stretch of community with sidewalks leading to a variety of stores, small businesses, and even a therapy center for kids. Perfect! We were in! Things were looking up!

Yet the trouble with an association neighborhood is that the committee sets the rules.

challenges-of-building-an-accessible-home

Challenges of building an accessible home When our builder presented plan after plan (approximately 7 plans…I believe), the association simply kept turning them down. Our handicap-accessible one-story just didn’t fit their image of perfection amongst all the two- story homes with tucked behind garages. Fight for our right to build, some advised. We decided to step away. Who wants to live where your neighbors disapprove of you before you even break ground? Life is tough enough.

As luck has it, my husband and I drove through an area in our current city that happens to have a lot of new construction occurring. We found an empty flat lot, unmarked but since it was in the newly developing section of town, we had to find out about it. Bryan contacted the county, found the owner, made an offer, and done. We had our lot. AMEN!

So that brings us to today. Well behind on our building timeline, set up in a townhouse rental, and planning and processing all the lighting fixtures, outlet placements, and plumbing essentials we need. We are weighing-out tile verses vinyl verses wood… in this building venture that is so different from the typical decisions made by home-builders. Which faucet could Roa possible operate? Which floor is most friendly for wheelchair tracks? What should we include in the roll-in shower for fixtures?

Overall, my friends, today’s building advice for families with needs:

1) Accept the motto: Disability before desire. It makes the process a little more real instead of a pricey fantasy.

2) When choosing your location consider the long-term. Is this a terrain that a manual chair, powerchair, walker, or canes can maneuver? Is this a neighborhood where you will feel supported and accepted?

3) Choose a builder who understands. One who has done this before and isn’t overly pushy in an already overly stressful venture.

4) Look beyond the “for sale” signs. Our perfect lot was just an empty piece of land someone wasn’t yet using. Inquire. You never know.

5) Be flexible with your timeline. Yes, there are leases to sign, school days and summer days to consider, but this isn’t a perfect process and things sometimes don’t go as planned.

6) Always look on to the bright side. After this is all over and you have walls around you, cost efficient home essentials, plus wide open hallways and enough floorspace for your special one to independently roam…. You can look back and say, “This wasn’t about me, but it was so worth it!”

Posted in barrier free living, Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, Community, construction, Custom Home, Dual-Function, Energy Star Certified, floor plan, For Rent, For Sale, general contractor, Handicap access, Handicap Accessible Homes, lots, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, New Construction, New Homes, Remodel, Remodeling, Smart Homes, tc builders, tc homes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

TC Homes: 2012 Trends

As TC Homes wraps up 2012, it is fun to look back at all that has been accomplished, as well as take a moment to thank those that helped us along the way!

Selling existing homes and building new construction homes has increased dramatically in the last year. There is also a trend that was foreseeable, but this year has become more evident… General contractors and sub-contractors are hiring, yet potential employees have dwindled. Have you heard? This sort of supply and demand has also started to play a role in existing homes final sale price.

Are you curious to see what your home is worth?

TC Homes has many people to thank for a successful 2012. We wouldn’t be where we are today without our sub-contractors and their amazing work. We appreciate our long-standing partnerships, as well as the loyalty that has been shown to us over the years. TC Homes is also thankful for our many realtor relationships, investment partners and referrals from past and present customers. There’s a lot to be said when a customer refers you to their builder and we thank you all very much.

A congratulations is in order for all of you that have packed your belongings and started your 2012 in a new home. TC Homes is honored to have helped you along the way and we look forward to hearing from you again. One of the most exciting parts of our business is getting to watch a family grow over the years. Whether it be through Christmas cards, birth announcements or a phone call, we are always joyed to share your news throughout our office.

From our families to yours,

Thank you and Merry Christmas,

The Tutt’s

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Heating Your New Home Efficiently

Winters can be a challenge. Waking up and having to get out of your warm bed. You make your way across the cold floor, or hop across the rugs to avoid the chill. But what if your tile floors were warm and toasty, putting a smile on your face as you step out of the shower…

Electric radiant heating is an ideal companion to any flooring type. TC Homes installs electric radiant heat under tile and stone floors to transform these naturally cold surfaces into warm and comfortable flooring. Also, installing floor heating in one’s basement is an efficient way also helps keep heating costs down, while creating that coziness that so many of us desire.

If you’re like us, we like to take it one step further. Heat the driveway! Eliminate hours of chipping away at an icy driveway. Icy driveways are a safety hazard. Installing radiant heat allows you to sit back and watch the snow melt on contact. Heated driveways are also a perfect solution for handicapped accessible homes and senior citizens.

Let TC Homes help you get the most out of your dream home.

Recently, lot selections are moving faster. Ask us about any of our affordable developments, or request our in-house realtor broker to locate your perfect location.

Learn about new home warranties. Contact Us to schedule a no obligation consultation. We’re all ears.

TC Homes is a Minneapolis, MN General Contractor. Our focus is on building custom homesremodeling projectsinsurance restoration and property management. Our service area includes much of the Twin Cities metro area. TC Homes has been in business for over 30 years and we are looking forward to another 30!

*Be sure to check out our rental properties and existing homes for sale.

Posted in barrier free living, Buying A Home, construction, Curb Appeal, Custom Home, general contractor, green homes, Handicap access, Handicap Accessible Homes, Home buying, How To Build, In floor heat, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, New Construction, New Homes, Radiant Heat, Smart Homes, tc builders, tc homes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Your Existing Home vs. Your New Home

At TC Homes, we meet with a lot of existing home owners. They come to us to sell their home, buy an existing home, build a custom home or remodel their home. We’ve even picked up a few homes to move them to a new location. Those instances are a little rare, but it does happen.

While meeting with future customers, we ask them what it is they’re looking for. Most often the conversation starts with the number of bedrooms and bathrooms and budget.

Besides the obvious conversations, we also like to know…What is driving you crazy about your existing home?

Here are some of the things we’ve heard over the years:

  • No exterior plug-ins for Christmas lights
  • Dishwasher and refrigerator collide
  • Our house faces the wrong direction
  • We need a kitchen island
  • There is no room for storage
  • We need room for our motorcycles
  • We need room for our horses
  • The laundry room cannot be in the basement
  • The closets cannot have wire shelving
  • The water never gets hot enough
  • The person who lived here before us did that

 

What would you add to this list?

Recently, lot selections are moving faster. Ask us about any of our affordable developments, or request our in-house realtor broker to locate your perfect location.

Don’t settle for less. Beware of forclosures. Learn about new home warranties. Contact Usto schedule a no obligation consultation. We’re all ears.

TC Homes is a Minneapolis, MN General Contractor. Our focus is on building custom homesremodeling projectsinsurance restoration and property management. Our service area includes much of the Twin Cities metro area. TC Homes has been in business for over 30 years and we are looking forward to another 30.

*Be sure to check out our rental properties and existing homes for sale.

 

Posted in Albertville, barrier free living, Brooklyn Park, Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, construction, Custom Home, Downganize, Dual-Function, family room, floor plan, For Sale, general contractor, green homes, Handicap access, Handicap Accessible Homes, Home buying, How To Build, Laundry Chute, lots, Maple Grove, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, Mud Room, New Construction, New Homes, Organization, Pantry, Plymouth, Radiant Heat, Rambler, Remodel, Remodeling, Robbinsdale, Rogers, Smart Homes, Square Footage, tc builders, tc homes, Townhomes, Twin Cities, Women-Centric | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Halloween In August?

It seems that a day of refreshing 70 degree weather has made the Pinterest world come alive with images of pumpkins and front porch decorations. This lead us to the topic of curb appeal and accessibility.

In Minnesota, the front porch may not get used as much as the back deck, but it says a lot when it comes to curb appeal. The front porch construction is dependent on the lot that is selected. For a welcome that is handicap accessible, or free of stairs, there needs to be a particular grade of the land.

Front porch designs that have become popular in the last decade include: wide stone columns that are free of thin spindles or railing. Hardie board siding is also preferred because of the durability and low maintenance. Hardie board is also paintable, allowing you move beyond vinyl color selections and really show off your personal style.

With the many front porch selections to choose from, TC Homes has found that the front door of your new home is what makes the greatest impression. Whether you prefer wood or steel, painted or stained, your front is the center of attention.

So, whether it is Halloween that it inspiring you to upgrade your front porch or the need for a barrier free entry, let TC Homes help you build the front porch you’ve been dreaming of. Of course, we’ll discuss the rest of the house too.

If you can dream it, we can build it.

TC Homes is a Minneapolis, MN General Contractor. Our focus is on building custom homesremodeling projectsinsurance restoration and property management. Our service area includes much of the Twin Cities metro area. TC Homes has been in business for over 30 years and we are looking forward to another 30.

*Be sure to check out our Green Townhomes located in the Parker Village development of Robbinsdale, MN – just 10 minutes from downtown Minneapolis. Take a Tour.

Posted in barrier free living, Buying A Home, Curb Appeal, Custom Home, For Sale, Front Porch, general contractor, Handicap access, Handicap Accessible Homes, Home buying, How To Build, lots, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, New Construction, New Homes, Rambler, Robbinsdale, tc builders, tc homes, Townhomes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Space and Spaces in Your New Home

There is a difference between a home having space and a home that also has spaces. TC Homes has taken both into consideration with uncomplicated floor plans that adapt over time and spaces throughout to help keep your home clean and organized.

If you’re looking for square footage space, our wide open and barrier free floor plans will suit any size family’s needs. Many of our homes include extra square footage in the living area and master suite. The basement is also a great area that is sometimes forgotten about. TC Homes basements aren’t dark and dreary. Our basements are filled with windows and sunshine. Whether you prefer your basement to be a man cave or a mother-in-law sweet, TC Homes has plans that offer adaptability, as well as selections that indulge your personal style.

If you’re looking for spaces, TC Homes has also taken storage to a higher level. You will find walk-in pantries, laundry chutes that have shelving built-in for additional storage and recycling stations that are convenient, yet tucked away.

Another one of the spaces that TC Homes has put extra attention on is the mud room. Minnesota winters add quite a bit of gear. Many homes have boots and gloves and backpacks and more during the school year and winter months. There is a great need for organization and elbow room when getting ready to go out. We had envisioned this area to be a bit bare in the summer months, but it turns out there is usually quite a bit of summer “stuff” to keep organized in the mud room as well.

If you are interested in building your affordable barrier free home, contact TC Homes to learn more. Recently, lot selections are moving faster. Ask us about any of our affordable developments, or request our in-house realtor broker to locate your perfect location.

Don’t settle for less. Beware of forclosures. Learn about new home warranties. Contact Us to schedule a no obligation consultation. We’re all ears.

TC Homes is a Minneapolis, MN General Contractor. Our focus is on building custom homesremodeling projectsinsurance restoration and property management. Our service area includes much of the Twin Cities metro area. TC Homes has been in business for over 30 years and we are looking forward to another 30.

*Be sure to check out our rental properties and existing homes for sale.

 

 

 

Posted in barrier free living, Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, construction, Custom Home, Dual-Function, family room, floor plan, For Rent, For Sale, Foreclosures, general contractor, Home buying, How To Build, Laundry Chute, lots, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, Mud Room, New Construction, New Homes, Organization, Pantry, Property Management, Remodel, Remodeling, Square Footage, tc builders, tc homes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Barrier Free Living

 

Roll-in showers are one of our most popular features in our fully accessible or universal custom homes. They’re beautifully designed and detailed, with every aspect carefully engineered and created with our expert craftsmanship. Let us know what we can design and build just for you.

TC Homes makes sure designs work for everyone, regardless of age, size, ability and changing needs, helps ensure that the shower will do just that.

If you are interested in building your affordable barrier free home, contact TC Homes to learn more. Recently, lot selections are moving faster. Ask us about any of our affordable developments, or request our in-house realtor broker to locate your perfect location.

Don’t settle for less. Beware of forclosures. Learn about new home warranties. Contact Us to schedule a no obligation consultation. We’re all ears.

TC Homes is a Minneapolis, MN General Contractor. Our focus is on building custom homesremodeling projectsinsurance restoration and property management. Our service area includes much of the Twin Cities metro area. TC Homes has been in business for over 30 years and we are looking forward to another 30.

*Be sure to check out our rental properties and existing homes for sale.

 

 

 

Posted in 2-Story, 3 stall garage, barrier free living, Brooklyn Park, Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, construction, Custom Home, floor plan, For Rent, For Sale, general contractor, Handicap access, Handicap Accessible Homes, Home buying, lots, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, Modified 2-Story, New Construction, New Homes, Property Management, Rambler, Renting, School District 11, tc builders, tc homes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What To Do With Your Three Stall Garage?

One of the luxuries of building a new home is getting to start from scratch. Your new home is a blank slate.

What would you do with, (insert announcer voice) “A Brand New Three Stall Garage!”

Top 10 List:

  • Painted concrete floor
  • Wainscoting and paint
  • Built-in organization for tools, bikes, toys
  • Built-in loft for storage and attic access
  • Sink
  • In-floor drain
  • Insulated/Heated
  • Surround sound for TV, stereo
  • Fridge/Freezer
  • Kegerator

Or, you could just use it to park your cars and store your garbage cans.

TC Homes is a Minneapolis, MN General Contractor. Our focus is on building custom homesremodeling projectsinsurance restoration and property management. Our service area includes much of the Twin Cities metro area. TC Homes has been in business for over 30 years and we are looking forward to another 30. Contact us for help selling your existing home and building the home of your dreams.

 

 

Posted in 3 stall garage, Builder Warranty, Buying A Home, construction, Custom Home, Dual-Function, For Sale, general contractor, Home buying, How To Build, lots, minneapolis metro, Minnesota Homes, MN, New Construction, New Homes, Square Footage, tc builders, tc homes, Twin Cities | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment